Do not Deceive your Own Hearts

Beloved, do not be your own betrayers. Do not deceive your own hearts, nor set your hands to your own ruin by a willful blinding of yourselves. Set up a tribunal in your own breasts. Bring the Word and conscience together. ‘To the law and to the testimony.’ [Isa 8:20] Hear what the Word concludes of your state. Oh follow the search until you find how the case stands. Make a mistake here—and you perish! And, such is the treachery of the heart, the subtlety of the temper, and the deceitfulness of sin—all conspiring to flatter and deceive the poor soul; and so common and easy it is to make a mistake, that it is a thousand to one that you will be deceived, unless you are very careful and thorough and impartial in the inquiry into your spiritual condition. ~ A Sure Guide to Heaven by Joseph Alleine

Many Rest in the Externals of Religion

Many rest in the externals of religion and in the outward performance of holy duties. And very often this most effectually deceives men, and more certainly undoes them than open profaneness; as it was in the Pharisee’s case. They hear, they fast, they pray, they give alms—and therefore will not believe their case is bad. Whereas, resting in the work done, and coming short of the heart-work and the inward power and vitality of religion, they fall at last into the burning, from the flattering hope and confident persuasion of their being all set on the way to heaven. Oh dreadful case, when a man’s religion shall serve only to harden him, and effectually to delude and deceive his own soul! ~ A Sure Guide to Heaven by Joseph Alleine

The Spiritually Blind Cannot Discern the Terrors of Hell

Could I bring paradise into view—or represent the kingdom of heaven to as much advantage as the tempter did the kingdoms of the world, and the glory thereof, to our Savior; or could I uncover the face of the deep and devouring gulf of Hell in all its terrors, and open the gates of the infernal furnace; alas, he [the spirituall dead] has no eyes to see it! Could I paint the beauties of holiness, or the glory of the Gospel; or could I expose to view the more than diabolical deformity and ugliness of sin; he can no more judge of the loveliness and beauty of the one, and the filthiness and hatefulness of the other, than a blind man of colors. He is alienated from the life of God, through the ignorance that is in him because of the blindness of his heart (Eph 4:18). He neither knows nor can know—the things of God, because they are spiritually discerned (1 Cor 2:14). His eyes cannot be savingly opened but by converting grace (Acts 26:18). He is a child of darkness, and walks in darkness. Yes, the light in him is darkness. ~ A Sure Guide to Heaven by Joseph Alleine

It is Better to Go Bruised to Heaven than Sound to Hell

It is better to go bruised to heaven than sound to hell. Therefore let us not take off ourselves too soon, nor pull off the plaster before the cure be wrought, but keep ourselves under this work till sin be the sourest, and Christ the sweetest, of all things. And when God’s hand is upon us in any way, it is good to divert our sorrow for other things to the root of all, which is sin. Let our grief run most in that channel, that as sin bred grief, so grief may consume sin. ~ The Bruised Reed by Richard Sibbes

There is an Infinite Distance and Disproportion Between God and Man

There is an infinite distance and disproportion between God and man; yet he came over all that to love man. What difficulty should I have, then, to place my affection on my equal at worst, and often better? There cannot be any proportionable distance between the highest and lowest, between the richest and poorest, between the most wise and the most ignorant, between the most gracious and the most ungodly, as there is between the infinite God and a finite angel. Should, then, the mutual infirmities and failings of Christians be an insuperable and impassable gulf, as between heaven and hell, that none can pass over by a bridge of love to either? ~ Christian Love by Hugh Binning

I Deserve Nothing Except it be Hell

I deserve nothing. I am nothing, and I deserve nothing. Suppose I lack this and that thing which others have? I am sure that I deserve nothing except it be Hell. You will answer any of your servants, who is not content: I wonder what you think you deserve? or your children: do you deserve it that you are so eager to have it? You would stop their mouths thus, and so we may easily stop our own mouths: we deserve nothing and therefore why should we be impatient if we do not get what we desire. If we had deserved anything we might be troubled, as in the case of a man who has deserved well of the state or of his friends, yet does not receive a suitable reward, it troubles him greatly, whereas if he is conscious that he has deserved nothing, he is content with a rebuff. ~ The Rare Jewel of Christian Contentment by Jeremiah Burroughs

A Man Ripe for Hell

Surely, there is not a greater sign of a man ripe for hell, than this, not only to lack grace, but to hate it. “All Things for Good” pg. 83

Shall I Sin Against Goodness

The goodness of God works for good to the godly. God’s goodness is a means to make us good. ” The goodness of God leadeth to repentance ” (Rom. ii. 4). The goodness of God is a spiritual sunbeam to melt the heart into tears. Oh, says the soul, has God been so good to me? Has He reprieved me so long from hell, and shall I grieve His Spirit any more? Shall I sin against goodness? The goodness of God works for good, as it ushers in all blessings. The favours we receive, are the silver streams which flow from the fountain of God’s goodness. “All Things for Good

Sinners Desire Christ Only for Shelter

Sinners desire Christ only for shelter. The Hebrews never chose their judges except when they were in some imminent danger. Godless persons never look for Christ except at death, when they are in danger of hell. “The Godly Man’s Picture” pg. 53

Sin is Worse than Hell

“Sin is worse than hell, but yet God, by His mighty over ruling power, makes sin turn to the good of His people. Hence that golden saying of Augustine, ‘God would never permit evil, if He could not bring good out of evil.'” ~ “Doctrine of Repentance